As an international student from Ethiopia, a member of this team explained the difficulties he had with the college application process. He elaborated on how difficult it was to look for higher education that was also inexpensive.

What it does

  • LIIFA is the bridge between ambitious international students and the insightful information they need to successfully apply to respected U.S universities.
  • LIIFA uses an interactive map created through the Google Maps API that gives a visualization of colleges with financial aid across the country. The Filter Functionality is the magic of LIIFA. Here are the filter options:

  • SAT scores - Users can filter by this to make sure of a good academic fit

  • Percentage of International Students - This is useful for their social fit, and to see how diverse the school is

  • Admission Rate - To understand their chances

  • Type of aid offered - To know if international students can earn aid And most Importantly: Estimated Cost of Attendance after Financial Aid

How we built it

At the moment, the central element in our project is the interactive map we have implemented. We went through the Google Maps API documentation, and looked at multiple tutorials on how to accomplish the task. We needed to find a new way for the map to implement the different features we wanted the map to have. We came across the geojson format, which we were able to utilize to store the respective data, and boolean values for our filters.

Challenges we ran into

  • We initially had trouble compiling the necessary data into a format that we could easily utilize in the interactive map.
  • In addition to that, we were having issues with uploading the files into our registered domain.

These were some of the issues that we had ran into during the process; we were able to overcome each challenge with the necessary research.

Accomplishments that we're proud of

  • We were able to implement the application design idea we had had initially, and upon revisions.
  • We used languages that we were not too familiar with to complete the project. As all the members are first-years in college, we have not been exposed to opportunities like this; we have been pushing ourselves to learn more over the course of the past 48 hours.

What we learned

HackNYU has given us the opportunity to be creative, come up with many ideas, then make them a reality. We have also had the opportunity to work with APIs that we would not normally dabble with during our school coursework, giving us the know-how on how to use them in the future.

What's next for LIIFA

  • A larger, more-inclusive database, which includes universities from outside the US as well.
  • Storing previously entered information and preferences within the application.
  • University search capability, through the use of either keywords, location, or focus on the user's area of study.
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